Archive for the 'Religion' Category



The Stupidity Of Criminologists: Rejecting The Sinfulness Of Mankind

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 4 days ago

City Journal.

“Liberal criminologists primarily support theories that locate the causes of crime in social and economic deprivation.”

So in other words, they reject Q&As 21, 22 and 23 of the Westminster Larger Catechism.

21. Q: Did man continue in that estate wherein God at first created him?

A: Our first parents being left to the freedom of their own will, through the temptation of Satan, transgressed the commandment of God in eating the forbidden fruit; and thereby fell from the estate of innocency wherein they were created.

22. Q: Did all mankind fall in that first transgression?

A: The covenant being made with Adam as a public person, not for himself only, but for his posterity, all  mankind descending from him by ordinary generation, sinned in him, and fell with him in that first transgression.

23. Q: Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?

A: The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery.

Well no wonder they’re so screwed up.  And Trump too if he thinks that “mental illness” causes crime.

Ted Cruz And Alyssa Milano Trade Barbs On The Bible And Gun Rights

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

Fox News.

“Can someone cite which passage of the Bible God states it is a god-given right to own a gun?” Milano asked in a tweet, accusing the Texas politician of being “unbelievable and clearly owned by the gun lobby.”

[ … ]

Cruz responded, telling the anti-gun activist, it was an “excellent” question, “worth considering [without] the snark of Twitter,” before citing a few examples from the Bible.

Then Milano said this.

Milano responded early Monday morning, saying she’d “love to come in and meet” Cruz when she is in Washington, D.C. next week.

“We can live-stream the meeting so the American people can hear your bullsh*t 1st hand,” she said, adding she’d like to talk about 1 Peter 4:8, which says: “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” [Editorial comment: So apparently covering a multitude of sins means allowing criminals to rape, kidnap and kill your family].

I don’t know who this person is.  But I want to be part of the live stream, pretty please?  I can exegete 1 Peter 4:8 for you instead of engaging in Scripture twisting like you did.

As for proof that Jesus approved of weapons, there are many passages I could cite, but we’ll start with Luke 22:36.  As I’ve discussed elsewhere, this was an important order to His disciples.

… for some evidence, see Digest 48.6.1: collecting weapons ‘beyond those customary for hunting or for a journey by land or sea’ is forbidden; 48.6.3.1 forbids a man ‘of full age’ appearing in public with a weapon (telum) (references and translation are from Mommsen 1985). See also Mommsen 1899: 564 n. 2; 657-58 n. 1; and Linderski 2007: 102-103 (though he cites only Mommsen). Other laws from the same context of the Digest sometimes cited in this regard are not as worthwhile for my purposes because they seem to be forbidding the possession of weapons with criminal intent. But for the outright forbidding of being armed while in public in Rome, see Cicero’s letter to his brother relating an incident in Rome in which a man, who is apparently falsely accused of plotting an assassination, is nonetheless arrested merely for having confessed to having been armed with a dagger while in the city: To Atticus, Letter 44 (II.24). See also Cicero, Philippics 5.6 (§17). Finally we may cite a letter that Synesius of Cyrene wrote to his brother, probably sometime around the year 400 ce. The brother had apparently questioned the legality of Synesius having his household produce weapons to defend themselves against marauding bands. Synesius points out that there are no Roman legions anywhere near for protection, but he seems reluctantly to admit that he is engaged in an illegal act (Letter 107; for English trans., see Fitzgerald 1926).

When Jesus told his disciples to go and purchase swords, debating over how many they got, or whether they used them and for what purpose, completely misses the point.  The point is that by telling them to do so, the Lord of the universe was ordering them to purchase and bear arms in violation of the law.  “This is a fact, and no amount of spiritualizing, Scripture twisting or hermeneutical machinations can get around it.”

Not only did Jesus approve of weaponry, he demanded His people purchase, keep and bear it.  I look forward to the invitation to live stream with you, Milano.

The Roots Of Liberty In America

BY Herschel Smith
2 months ago

I don’t sit waiting on the next post by Max Velocity in order to critique it, but this came in the mail and I felt that it would be appropriate to weigh in with readers.

This is a bit of a combination post and is intended to get a few things off my chest, and challenge the narrative. I will mince no words when I tell you that the state of things in this country right now appalls me. We have just had July the 4th and as a (former) Brit I have seen my share of dumb statements that drive me nuts.

Anyway, this is what I think: I will ‘recast’ for you the American Revolution. I know you won’t like it, because you have been reared on your own historical propaganda. In simple terms, the events surrounding 1776 were a civil war between the British Crown and Aristocratic landlords in the US, who were British. The colonies were British and had been for a couple of hundred years. The beginnings of America were British.

In the 1776 civil war, there were various actors. The British Regular Army, Hessian mercenaries, the Rebels, the Colonial Loyalists, and the French Navy. When Paul Revere made his ride, what he was actually yelling was “The Regulars are coming.” Not the British, because everyone was British.

When the Regulars marched to Lexington, they were met by British Colonial Militia. Yes, yes, farmers with guns blah blah, but they were actually a militia, trained to be able to fight with the weapons of the day. However, nothing should take away from the huge achievement of the rebels. I won’t go on here about that fact that Britain was involved in a huge war with France, and that a tiny percentage of combat power was only ever able to be given up to fight in the American colonies. For the colonies, this was a life and death struggle; for Britain, it was a sideshow. Same with 1814 etc: for Americans relating this on July 4th, it is everything, for the British Empire at the time it was nothing but a side-show to achieve specific political objectives. In short, there is a lot of American Hubris over events about 200 years ago, not really tied to any general awareness of world events at the time. Much of this can be traced to American ethnocentrism safe behind the ocean walls that protect this country. Consider this: Britain was involved in a total war with the French Empire, which was not concluded until the defeat of Napoleon in 1815 at the Battle of Waterloo. By today’s standards, the relatively small taxes levied in the Colonies were to help pay for that war. It was extremely self centered for the Rebels to pick that time to conduct a revolution: and don’t forget the large number of Colonial Loyalists who stayed loyal. I have not studied it, but given the war in Europe, I am interested to know who it was that Britain sent to the Colonies as Regular troops in order to fight the rebellion. What was their standard? Were they green troops or hardened veterans who were sent for a needed rest? It’s an interesting point.

If he’s right, it wasn’t self-centered, it was smart.  But I don’t think he’s right.  In fact, I think this analysis is very poor and perhaps suffers from his own propagandistic rearing.  And no, I couldn’t care less who were the British regulars sent to prosecute war in the Americas.

We’ve dealt with this in just a bit of detail before, but I’ll recapitulate it.  General Howe was hopelessly mired in operations in the North.  The linchpin of the British strategy was General Cornwallis and his plan to take the important Southern port of Charleston, which he did after taking Savannah, and then move North through the Carolinas and eventually meet with General Howe.  Despite several conventional victories, his forces suffered many casualties and lack of logistics mainly because of the insurgency in South Carolina (combined with the death of his plan to use loyalist troops in battle against patriots).

His intention was to march Northward, with the hideously awful plan of leaving loyalists in charge of land and assets taken in battle.  This approach failed when loyalists evaporated and patriots multiplied.  Cornwallis’ plan to march Northward became a plan to flee to Wilmington carrying wounded troops and attempt resupply.  He was hauling wounded troops with a depleted force, and needed lead ball, gunpowder and virtually everything else.  His retreat to Wilmington was unapproved, but he knew that his force couldn’t sustain much longer without rest and resupply.

At the height of the campaign in Afghanistan, I predicted the failure of logistics through Chaman and the Khyber pass, and because of the U.S. failure to engage the Caucasus region, supply aircraft left and returned from Donaldson AFB 24 hours a day, 365 days per year (Mr. Bob King, Instructor, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Department of Joint, Interagency and Multinational Operations, Leavenworth, encouraged my work in this area).  Essentially, logistics were provided to U.S. forces in Afghanistan via air transport, which is no way to prosecute a war.

The American continent became the British Afghanistan times a thousand.  Continued logistics were impossible.  The expanse of the land made it too cumbersome, too difficult, too costly, and too involved.  Furthermore, the temperament of the people was not conducive to rule by the Brits.  It wouldn’t have mattered if The Brits had sent all of their armies.  The campaign would have lasted longer, but in the end the outcome would have been the same.

But the most profoundly wrong sentiment in the article I cited above isn’t the analysis of the campaign, but rather, the reasons and impetus for its advent.  Whether there were aristocrats involved or engaged isn’t the point.  Modern American community is fractured to the point of being nonexistent.  Consider.  In the expansive wilderness of the American frontier, if a man perished on the field of battle, he needed someone he could entrust with the lives of his widow and children.  To whom could you turn today?

In order to understand history, one must turn to the primary source documents.  Secondary source documents, along with the pronouncements of professors of history, can lead one astray.  For both the American war of independence and the war between the states, my professors forced me to study sermons, and in fact read some aloud in class.

The city square was little visited compared to the church pew in colonial times.  The place for philosophy, politics and theology was the pulpit, and the theologian-philosopher was the pastor.  In order to understand why the American revolution happened, you must read the sermons of the day.  Aristocrat-involvement or not, fighting men were needed, men who could entrust their families to aid from a dedicated community in the event of their death.  Without fighting men, such an adventure as the American revolution is just a figment of aristocratic imagination.

The sermons were heavily focused on the breakage of covenant by King George.  In fact, it has been said – and correctly so – that “The American revolution was a Presbyterian rebellion.”  “Calvinists and Calvinism permeated the American colonial milieu, and the king’s friends did not wish for this fact to go unnoticed.”

As I’ve explained elsewhere:

In terms of population alone, a high percentage of the pre-revolutionary colonies were of Puritan-Calvinist background.  There were about three million persons in the thirteen original colonies in 1776, and perhaps as many as two-thirds of these came from some kind of Calvinist or Puritan connection.

[ … ]

… by 1776, nine of the thirteen original colonies had an “established church” (generally congregational in New England, Anglican in New York, Virginia and South Carolina, “Protestant” in North Carolina, with religious freedom in Rhode Island, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Georgia) … While this did not necessarily mean that a majority of the inhabitants of these colonies were necessarily committed Christian believers, it does indicate the lingering influence of the Calvinist concept of a Christian-based civil polity as an example to a world in need of reform.

Every colony had its own form of Christian establishment or settlement.  Every one was a kind of Christian republic.  It was to them a monstrous idea … for an alien body, parliament, to impose an establishment on them.  The colonies were by nature and history Christian … to read the Constitution as the charter for a secular state is to misread history, and to misread it radically.  The Constitution was designed to perpetrate a Christian order.

Their experience in Presbyterian polity – with its doctrine of the headship of Christ over the church, the two-powers doctrine giving the church and state equal standing (so that the church’s power is not seen as flowing from the state), and the consequent right of the people to civil resistance in accordance with higher divine law – was a major ingredient in the development of the American approach to church-state relations and the underlying questions of law, authority, order and rights.

[ … ]

It was largely from the congregation polity of these New England puritans that there came the American concept and practice of government by covenant – that is to say: constitutional structure, limited by divine law and based on the consent of the people, with a lasting right in the people to resist tyranny.

It may be difficult for contemporary Americans to comprehend, but for colonial America, covenant was king, the roots of the revolution were largely theological, and the people were deeply religious whether the aristocrats were or not.  There was going to be revolution with or without the aristocrats.  The Brits in America and the Brits in England were far too different to co-exist under the same crown.

Before closing, there is one more odd statement in the article.

None of the above is to say that I don’t think that ultimately the events of 1776 – 1787, resulting in the founding of the original thirteen colonies of America as a separate united country, was a bad thing. It’s just important to look at it in it’s true light. My understanding is that a lot of loyalists moved to Canada – it’s pretty poor form that the US then tried to invade Canada! Consider also Washington’s put-down of the Whiskey Rebellion – how hypocritical. In fact, that makes you smell a rat at the very beginning of the formation of the country. It was about the first new American tax. Many of the rebels were war veterans who believed that they were fighting for the principles of the American Revolution; against taxation without local representation, while the new federal government maintained that the taxes were the legal expression of Congressional taxation powers.

I’ve seen this sentiment before and while tempting, I do not fully concur with it.  If the power of taxation doesn’t extend to the payment of salaries for military service, it would never extend to anything.  A conversation between a libertarian and me almost turned ugly at one point when he demanded that continued medical services for veterans was socialism.

To be sure, unearned entitlements such as SNAP and welfare is socialism, but as for what my son did in the USMC, he signed a contract with the U.S. government.  The WCF has this to say about lawful oaths and vows.

Whosoever taketh an oath ought duly to consider the weightiness of so solemn an act, and therein to avouch nothing but what he is fully persuaded is the truth. Neither may any man bind himself by oath to anything but what is good and just, and what he believeth so to be, and what he is able and resolved to perform.

The contract signed by my son, and all veterans, and by the U.S. government, is a lawful oath.  His education benefit, his medical benefits, and so on, were part of the contract.  Failure to meet the stipulations of that contract is sinful.  You can decide that you don’t like it and work through your elected representatives to change it, but you cannot revisit what has been signed.  I repeat.  It is a lawful covenant.

Equally sinful is the failure to pay for service rendered by the members of the continental army.  The Whiskey tax was legally passed with local representation in 1791.  Max’s objection that the rebels believed they were fighting against a tax that lacked “local representation” is fabulating.  The members of the House approved it.  They elected the members of the House.

To be sure, I would have chosen to do this otherwise (than a silly, nonsensical tax on Whiskey).  But of equal importance, perhaps more important, is the question why America believed it could avoid the immorality of failing its obligations to fulfill covenants and contracts.  That says as much about the times as does the Whiskey tax.

“You shall not muzzle an Ox when it is treading out the grain,” (Deut 25:4).  So says God, whether you like it or not.

The final points on due remuneration to soldiers of the continental army are mostly beside the point except that they were addressed in the original article.  Suffice it to say that I disagree with the spirit of the balance of the article.

I do concur that it is time for America to take note of what has been gained, what has been lost, and why we are where we find ourselves.  But Max, while full of complaints, suffers from what I find in this community.  Diagnosis of the problem is everywhere.  Remedies are in short supply.

I intend to offer a few remedies of my own, and these are unrelated to the article that started this.  I don’t want to leave the reader without hope and actionable ideas.

1] Resolve never to be disarmed.  That is the least your family and community should be able to expect from you.  This involves having a world and life view to support such a determination.  You have no greater God-given duty than to your family for their protection and provision.

Libertarianism isn’t that world and life view.  As R. J. Rushdoony observed:

“Modern libertarianism rests on a radical relativism: no law or standard exists apart from man himself. Some libertarian professors state in classes and in conversation that any position is valid as long as it does not claim to be the truth, and that therefore Biblical religion is the essence of evil to them. There must be, according to these libertarians, a total free market of ideas and practices.

If all men are angels, then a total free market of ideas and practices will produce only an angelic community. But if all men are sinners in need of Christ’s redemption, then a free market of ideas and practices will produce only a chaos of evil and anarchy. Both the libertarian and the Biblical positions rest on faith, the one on faith in the natural goodness of man, the other on God’s revelation concerning man’s sinful state and glorious potential in Christ. Clearly the so-called rational faith of such irrationalism as Hess and Rothbard represent has no support in the history of man nor in any formulation of reason. It is a faith, and a particularly blind faith in man, which they represent.”

Libertarianism is tyranny by substituting the government for the individual.  A tyrant by any other name is still a tyrant, and tyranny can present itself in lawless behavior in the community just as it can in taxation.  Classic libertarian politicians, like Ron and Rand Paul, care less about laws to protect the border than the democrats (who want voters) or republicans (who want cheap workers for the corporations).  Libertarianism leads to lawlessness and breaking of covenants, contracts, vows, oaths and obligations.

Your basis for never being disarmed is that you were created in God’s image, and His law is immutable and transcendental.  Anything else is shifting ground and will disappoint you.

2] Consider your community.  If you cannot entrust anyone except family for the protection of your wife and children, not only is that a sad testimony concerning the state of America, but it makes a laughingstock of plans to conduct small unit fire and maneuver tactics.  You need to look for a good church, one that values caring for widows and orphans more than it does large buildings and multi-media presentations.

3] Horace Mann laughs from the grave.  If your children or grandchildren are in the public school systems of communist reeducation, you should consider home schooling.  Incrementalism isn’t something we should reject in the patriot community.  Practically and humanly speaking, the father of modern Christian education in America, Rousas J. Rushdoony, believed so thoroughly in Christian education and home schooling that he spent much of his life on it and believed it to be the only real hope for America.

I hope this engenders discussion, thought and study.

Saving The Christians In Nigeria

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 3 weeks ago

Frank Gaffney:

Vice President Mike Pence will have today what could be a decisive meeting for tens of millions of Christians in Nigeria now facing the prospect of genocide and forced mass emigration.

Mr. Pence’s visitor is a man who should be on their side, his Nigerian counterpart Yemi Osinbajo. After all, he’s one of the very few Christians in a Nigerian government otherwise dominated by Islamist Fulani tribesmen.

Unfortunately, Mr. Osinbajo is instead part of the problem. He lies shamelessly – including this weekend in New York – about the anti-Christian persecution his government is at least tolerating and, at worst, enabling.  Osinbajo’s own tribe has sharply repudiated him for doing so.

If Vice President Pence makes clear that all the persecutors in Nigeria will be held accountable and face penalties, he may be able to prevent a catastrophe there on his and President Trump’s watch.

What penalties, Frank?  Name them.  I’m betting that you can’t name a penalty that isn’t associated with armed violence, or that (in the case of economic sanctions) isn’t associated with a country that stays in power by the threat of armed violence.

That means that any saving to be done is catalyzed by arms, large or small, you pick.  And what it means that anyone has to go to a president or vice president of the U.S. to demand this is that the Christians won’t go to war themselves to prevent being evicted from their own country.  Note well the irony – Christians won’t engage in collective self defense, but we’ll demand that the folks who are armed defend them.  With guns.  One is seen as unrighteous, the other righteous.

Christians around the world have bought into the notion of Jesus as a Bohemian, peacenik, pacifist, hippie flower child.  But no one is coming to save you.  America is bankrupt, and cannot afford another war and occupation.

Christians, arm up and prepare to do battle.  It’s the righteous thing to do.

Iraq’s Christians “Close To Extinction”

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 3 weeks ago

BBC:

In an impassioned address in London, the Rt Rev Bashar Warda said Iraq’s Christians now faced extinction after 1,400 years of persecution.

Since the US-led invasion toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein in 2003, he said, the Christian community had dwindled by 83%, from around 1.5 million to just 250,000.

“Christianity in Iraq,” he said, “one of the oldest Churches, if not the oldest Church in the world, is perilously close to extinction. Those of us who remain must be ready to face martyrdom.”

[ … ]

Taking a historical perspective, the Archbishop of Irbil lamented the fact that in centuries past there was a happy period of fruitful cooperation between Christians and Muslims in Iraq, a time that historians have referred to as the Islamic Golden Age.

“Our Christian ancestors shared with Muslim Arabs a deep tradition of thought and philosophy,” says Archbishop Warda. “They engaged with them in respectful dialogue from the 8th Century.

The last two paragraphs are an outright lie and he knows it.  I feel pretty bad about all of this for them, but it would help a great deal if [a] he would quit whining to the Brits about it (they aren’t going to do anything), and [b] his statement had read this way: “Those of us who remain must be ready to pick up weapons and go to war to kill our oppressors.”

So much for GWB’s naïve notion of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).  Yea, freedom only for certain religions, oppression for others.

British Gun Activist Loses Firearms Licences After Saying French Should Have Been Able To Defend Themselves With Handguns Following Bataclan Massacre

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 3 weeks ago

News from the UK.

According to The Times, in a message to his 17,000 YouTube subscribers, Mr Long-Collins said: ‘I was told that due to repeated comments from other people on the videos, [the police] felt that the channel was a forum of extremism and it was promoting views that were not in line with legal firearms ownership in the UK.’

He told the paper: ‘The main issue was a video that I made around the Paris attacks where I advocated the French to be able to use handguns for self-defence because of the frequency of attacks that were happening at the time.’

Mr Long-Collins lost an appeal against the decision to revoke his gun licences in 2016 at Portsmouth crown court.

He has been told by police recently that they are unlikely to reinstate the licences in the near future, The Times reports.

The crown won’t allow men to defend themselves.  They won’t even allow men to express opinions at variance with their own.  It’s sort of like a communist country, yes?

Now, contrast that with the words of Jesus.  We’ve discussed it before at length.

… for some evidence, see Digest 48.6.1: collecting weapons ‘beyond those customary for hunting or for a journey by land or sea’ is forbidden; 48.6.3.1 forbids a man ‘of full age’ appearing in public with a weapon (telum) (references and translation are from Mommsen 1985). See also Mommsen 1899: 564 n. 2; 657-58 n. 1; and Linderski 2007: 102-103 (though he cites only Mommsen). Other laws from the same context of the Digest sometimes cited in this regard are not as worthwhile for my purposes because they seem to be forbidding the possession of weapons with criminal intent. But for the outright forbidding of being armed while in public in Rome, see Cicero’s letter to his brother relating an incident in Rome in which a man, who is apparently falsely accused of plotting an assassination, is nonetheless arrested merely for having confessed to having been armed with a dagger while in the city: To Atticus, Letter 44 (II.24). See also Cicero, Philippics 5.6 (§17). Finally we may cite a letter that Synesius of Cyrene wrote to his brother, probably sometime around the year 400 ce. The brother had apparently questioned the legality of Synesius having his household produce weapons to defend themselves against marauding bands. Synesius points out that there are no Roman legions anywhere near for protection, but he seems reluctantly to admit that he is engaged in an illegal act (Letter 107; for English trans., see Fitzgerald 1926).

When Jesus told his disciples to go and purchase swords, debating over how many they got, or whether they used them and for what purpose, completely misses the point.  The point is that by telling them to do so, the Lord of the universe was ordering them to purchase and bear arms in violation of the law.  “This is a fact, and no amount of spiritualizing, Scripture twisting or hermeneutical machinations can get around it.”

I’ll stick with Jesus.  The UK has decided to follow satan.

What Guns Do To Our State Of Mind

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 4 weeks ago

Pacific Standard:

“Whoever touches that gun, he’ll die at some point … because it acts on you,” explained a 37-year-old man who lives in the poor neighborhood of Bel Air in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where I have worked as an anthropologist since 2008. Kal* was talking about a specific Smith & Wesson .38 special caliber revolver, long the standard issue gun of American police and United States-trained security forces in Haiti. After being purchased for $75 from a former army soldier, this gun passed through the hands of three men: a young father, Frantz; Papapa, a young man; and Henri, another new father.

[ … ]

When I asked Belairians why these deaths occurred, they often surmised that the gunmen fell victim to maji, or “magic.” In Haiti, magic refers to an unethical use of spiritual power, distinct from ceremonial forms of Vodou, which call on ancestors to heal and protect the family. (Vodou is the preferred spelling, rather than Voodoo, which some practitioners view as derogatory.) This form of magic entails engaging with secret powers that allow a person to advance at the expense of another. To many, the men died because the occult forces they had been using for unethical gain had ultimately turned against them—opening them up to conflict and failing to protect them.

Yet when neighbors relayed how the deaths happened, they offered explanations involving a different kind of occult transformation: the supernatural potency of the .38 to change people into unethical agents. With each subsequent death, lore intensified around the gun, with people surmising that “touching” this gun could portend death. “Ever since they touched the gun, those poor young boys were not the same,” said one community member. Residents spoke about the gun as if it were an amulet that could change otherwise good people and what they did in the world.

It would be shortsighted to dismiss these claims as the misguided logic of a “superstitious people.” That racially inflected trope, long used to marginalize and demonize Haitians, among others, blinds observers to the way in which guns do exhibit a power akin to magic: the power to create a change in someone’s state of mind.

Taking seriously the supernatural effects of guns has broad relevance for understanding and addressing gun violence globally. In the U.S., gun advocates tend to view the gun as a value-neutral tool. As they say: “Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.” On the other side are gun control advocates who argue that guns do indeed kill people: Without their lethal power easily at hand, as in other countries, far fewer deaths occur. But the anthropological lesson from Haiti is that the truth is more complex. It isn’t just the technological lethality of guns that makes them dangerous: They also exert a power on human agency. They change us. It is both the technology and the symbolism of a gun that can encourage someone to shoot.

The author, Chelsey Kivland, is as superstitious as the Haitians.  An inanimate object, note well, has power over human agency, the power to make a human engage in acts of evil, superseding whatever that person would or would not have done otherwise.  Forget that effects of bombs and the availability of fertilizer at Lowe’s and Tractor Supply, it’s the object itself that literally exercises power over human volition.

This is the new temperance movement.  My former professor, C. Gregg Singer, taught extensively on social Darwinism, the temperance movement, Hegelian philosophy in America, and the liberal progressive roots of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”

At the time it was alcohol, and to them it was the “moral ruin which it works in the soul, that gives it the denomination of giant wickedness.”  It isn’t that mankind is wicked to begin with due to the federal headship in Adam, it was an external object, and thus smarter men and women can seek the perfection of mankind by eliminating those elements which encourage evil.

It is superstition in the Haitians that underlies this notion, it was superstition in the temperance movement that does the same, and it’s no less ignorant superstition in Ms. Kivland which causes her to see the world and man this way.

South Carolina Church Vandalized, Islamist Messages Painted On Walls

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago

WSPA.com:

ANDERSON CO., SC (WSPA) – Deputies are looking for the person or persons responsible for vandalizing a church in Anderson County.

The Anderson County Sheriff’s Office says someone broke windows and spray painted messages on the side of Midway Presbyterian Church on Midway Road.

According to deputies, the windows in the church were over 125 years old.

The words “SUBMIT TO GOD THRU ISLAM” and “MUHAMMED IS HIS PROPHET” were spray pained in black onto the siding of the church.

Elders of the church tell 7News they did not let the act of vandals disturb their services and lunch on Sunday.

“It was very disturbing because we feel like this was an individual act and we don’t hold any religious group responsible for it,” said Bob Harrell. “We think it most likely was some misguided young people. However, we do take it very seriously and we’ll do everything we can to assist law enforcement.”

As I’ve said, prepare now.

If you are a member of a church and attend worship regularly, do you have a security plan?  No, having an armed cop on duty isn’t a security plan.  Do you have a number of armed congregants in the building?  Have you trained together as a group?  Do you have overwatch?  Do you have security cameras?  Do you have patrols?  I’m talking about 24/365 security, or a recognition that if you don’t have that kind of security on your building, as the country trends towards Europe, you may lose the building.

Tomorrow will be too late.  This may be a prank, but it may not be.  You live in a different American than what your mother and father knew.

It didn’t take long after the church abdicated its responsibility to be salt and light before American went to hell.  I’ve often thought that premillennial dispensationalism (the belief that God has two different people, the Jews and the church, saved in different ways, with the church pulled out of the world in the “rapture” before the real fireworks begin), with its belief that “you don’t polish brass on a sinking ship,” was the best crafted lie in history to neuter and render the church powerless and lifeless.

I once asked a close friend, who is a dispensationalist, the following question.  “There isn’t a single time in history when God allowed His people (the church is His people) to abdicate responsibility to be salt and light, to turn over the arts and sciences to the godless, to give their children over the Baal, and follow the world rather than Christ, and get away with avoiding the consequences of their actions.  What makes you think God will do that for the church, since it has gotten in bed with Hollywood, allowed abortion on demand, voted for all manner of scum, failed to teach the world about God’s law, and turned its children over to the state for education?  What makes you think that God will snatch us out and allow us to avoid the consequences of our own behavior?”

His answer: “Just because it’s never happened doesn’t mean it won’t.”  That, people, is the voice of irrationality.

Prepare for judgment.  It is coming upon America, and you’re here at the beginning of it.

The Burning Of Notre Dame

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago

I neither listen to the radio nor watch television.  But today while driving my radio had turned on because I had just stopped for petrol and restarted the truck.  Unfortunately, I was listening to Shep Smith with Fox News.

The man is a child, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.  Speaking with the utmost unction and dramatic pauses for effect, he stated something like that even if one is not religious, the Cathedral of Notre Dame was a testament and tribute to “the highest aspirations of man,” and showed what man can accomplish.

Hear me well.  The structure has nothing whatsoever to do with why the Cathedral was built.  The highest aspirations of man built the tower of Babel, an abject failure, not the Notre Dame.  He can speak with personal conviction all he wants about witnessing the Cathedral in person and being astonished at the architecture, art and design.  He entirely missed the point of it all, like an insect flying in the space shuttle or a bird caught inside the dome of a reactor building wondering why he can’t get out rather than how we’ve harnessed the power of the atom (I’ve witnessed such a bird before).  He didn’t even begin to grasp any significant element of the story.

I am not a Roman Catholic.  I am a Protestant, and more specifically, a Calvinist.  My theological hero and the prefect of Rome did historic battle.  Upon Christ’s death on the cross, the veil of the Holy of Holies was torn asunder (Matt 27:51).  I do not confess my sins to another man, and I do not seek forgiveness from them unless I have wronged them.  There is no mediator between God and man (including me) except Christ Jesus.  The entire two millennia history of Roman Catholicism has been an attempt to sew the veil back together again.

With all of that said, there is something unique about the architectural history of the church that is admirable.  Cathedrals aren’t built like stadiums where something man is accomplishing becomes the center of focus (witness the Roman coliseums where Christians perished, or Paul’s sermon on Mars Hill, the Areopagus).  The entire purpose of the design and construction of the Cathedral was to point man higher, to the Almighty, to the only one who is worthy of worship.  Shep Smith and simpletons like him have it exactly backwards.

On the other hand, the so-called body of Christ is His people, those who have received His salvation.  In the early church, they met in homes, and even then were arrested sometimes almost immediately after receiving baptism.  That was the sequence.  Receive Christ, confess His name, receive baptism, and perish.  They were serious about their business, it was no casual affair.

Notre Dame can burn, but the group of His people, the church, the few who are left in France, remains, as it ever will across the world.  It could also be observed that Notre Dame represented a vanquished, defeated, eviscerated church.  There was nothing left.  Today, France belongs to Camus, Sartre and Derrida.  They believe nothing, so it was only a building that burned.  It was even owned by the state and permanently leased to the Roman Catholic Church.

From Wirecutter, we learn that twelve French churches have been attacked and vandalized within one week alone.  That seems more than coincidence.  Also, via WRSA there is a long discussion thread about other incidents, including the fact that on Friday, “Islamic terrorist Inez Madani was jailed for eight years for her attempted car bombing outside of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.”

I don’t know the cause of the blaze.  I suspect that it was either [a] Islamic terrorists, or [b] unintentionally started.  In the first case, I’ll ask the same question I’ve asked before: If you are a member of a church and attend worship regularly, do you have a security plan?  No, having an armed cop on duty isn’t a security plan.  Do you have a number of armed congregants in the building?  Have you trained together as a group?  Do you have overwatch?  Do you have security cameras?  Do you have patrols?  I’m talking about 24/365 security, or a recognition that if you don’t have that kind of security on your building, as the country trends towards Europe, you may lose the building.

If this fire was started inadvertently, it’s malfeasance.  All accidents are preventable.  All accidents are preventable.  Someone didn’t fully think through and implement pre-job briefs, training, fire suppression, fire watch, use of welding blankets and other protective measures, communication of expectations to craft, construction of proper temporary ventilation, and proper safety engineering.  I suspect the Spire became a chimney pulling air into the bottom of the building, with a heat source, heat sink, and the heat sink (the atmosphere) at a higher elevation than the heat source.  All of the elements for natural circulation were there.  A good engineer would have known this and planned for it.

This also has vast implications for congregants in American churches today.  If you do something like this, you’ll go bankrupt paying settlements for damage, lose your building, possibly cause injury or death, and get shut down by OSHA.

I won’t worship where I’m not allowed to carry the weapon of my choice, not because I won’t carry non-permissively (I do at times), but because that shows a reflexive reversion to the “Jesus was a Bohemian peacenik, pacifist, hippie, flower child” cult.  And if I see something unsafe, I’ll say something or even do what it takes to stop work, regardless of what that entails.

Times are changing.  Times have already changed.  Change with the times.

Good Christians Need Not Own Guns

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 1 week ago

New Haven Independent:

The activists come from different backgrounds: Claiborne is an evangelical author and anti-violence activist. Martin is a Mennonite pastor turned blacksmith. Both of them believe in the necessity of a “Christian response” to the American gun violence crisis. The tour was planned to coincide with the pre-Easter season of Lent, when many Christians reflect on the sanctity of life.

[ … ]

First Claiborne read aloud a prayer that he had written to commemorate the event.

“Dear God, we thank you for giving us a perfect world, and we ask forgiveness to the mess we’ve made of it,” he said.

This is an odd theology and he’s on the horns of a real epistemological dilemma.  On the one hand, the world if perfect, but on the other hand, we’ve made a mess of it.  But if we’ve made a mess of it, the world wasn’t really perfect after all because that evil had to come from somewhere.  He hasn’t fully theologically dealt with the effects of the fall in Adam and federal headship and original sin.

Nonetheless, I think he’s a liar.  I think he doesn’t really believe a word of that.  I think he locks his door at night, and I think he still wants police to be armed.

He is welcome to comment on these pages and prove me wrong.


26th MEU (10)
Abu Muqawama (12)
ACOG (2)
ACOGs (1)
Afghan National Army (36)
Afghan National Police (17)
Afghanistan (679)
Afghanistan SOFA (4)
Agriculture in COIN (3)
AGW (1)
Air Force (34)
Air Power (9)
al Qaeda (83)
Ali al-Sistani (1)
America (17)
Ammunition (78)
Animals (37)
Ansar al Sunna (15)
Anthropology (3)
Antonin Scalia (1)
AR-15s (180)
Arghandab River Valley (1)
Arlington Cemetery (2)
Army (72)
Assassinations (2)
Assault Weapon Ban (27)
Australian Army (6)
Azerbaijan (4)
Backpacking (2)
Badr Organization (8)
Baitullah Mehsud (21)
Basra (17)
BATFE (79)
Battle of Bari Alai (2)
Battle of Wanat (18)
Battle Space Weight (3)
Bin Laden (7)
Blogroll (2)
Blogs (16)
Body Armor (18)
Books (3)
Border War (10)
Brady Campaign (1)
Britain (38)
British Army (35)
Camping (4)
Canada (2)
Castle Doctrine (1)
Caucasus (6)
CENTCOM (7)
Center For a New American Security (8)
Charity (3)
China (10)
Christmas (10)
CIA (27)
Civilian National Security Force (3)
Col. Gian Gentile (9)
Combat Outposts (3)
Combat Video (2)
Concerned Citizens (6)
Constabulary Actions (3)
Coolness Factor (2)
COP Keating (4)
Corruption in COIN (4)
Council on Foreign Relations (1)
Counterinsurgency (216)
DADT (2)
David Rohde (1)
Defense Contractors (2)
Department of Defense (143)
Department of Homeland Security (22)
Disaster Preparedness (3)
Distributed Operations (5)
Dogs (12)
Donald Trump (20)
Drone Campaign (3)
EFV (3)
Egypt (12)
El Salvador (1)
Embassy Security (1)
Enemy Spotters (1)
Expeditionary Warfare (17)
F-22 (2)
F-35 (1)
Fallujah (17)
Far East (3)
Fathers and Sons (2)
Favorite (1)
Fazlullah (3)
FBI (29)
Featured (180)
Federal Firearms Laws (18)
Financing the Taliban (2)
Firearms (1,005)
Football (1)
Force Projection (35)
Force Protection (4)
Force Transformation (1)
Foreign Policy (27)
Fukushima Reactor Accident (6)
Ganjgal (1)
Garmsir (1)
general (15)
General Amos (1)
General James Mattis (1)
General McChrystal (43)
General McKiernan (6)
General Rodriguez (3)
General Suleimani (7)
Georgia (19)
GITMO (2)
Google (1)
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1)
Gun Control (1,046)
Guns (1,506)
Guns In National Parks (3)
Haditha Roundup (10)
Haiti (2)
HAMAS (7)
Haqqani Network (9)
Hate Mail (8)
Hekmatyar (1)
Heroism (4)
Hezbollah (12)
High Capacity Magazines (13)
High Value Targets (9)
Homecoming (1)
Homeland Security (1)
Horses (1)
Humor (20)
ICOS (1)
IEDs (7)
Immigration (83)
India (10)
Infantry (4)
Information Warfare (2)
Infrastructure (2)
Intelligence (23)
Intelligence Bulletin (6)
Iran (169)
Iraq (379)
Iraq SOFA (23)
Islamic Facism (61)
Islamists (91)
Israel (18)
Jaish al Mahdi (21)
Jalalabad (1)
Japan (2)
Jihadists (80)
John Nagl (5)
Joint Intelligence Centers (1)
JRTN (1)
Kabul (1)
Kajaki Dam (1)
Kamdesh (9)
Kandahar (12)
Karachi (7)
Kashmir (2)
Khost Province (1)
Khyber (11)
Knife Blogging (4)
Korea (4)
Korengal Valley (3)
Kunar Province (20)
Kurdistan (3)
Language in COIN (5)
Language in Statecraft (1)
Language Interpreters (2)
Lashkar-e-Taiba (2)
Law Enforcement (3)
Lawfare (7)
Leadership (5)
Lebanon (6)
Leon Panetta (2)
Let Them Fight (2)
Libya (14)
Lines of Effort (3)
Littoral Combat (8)
Logistics (50)
Long Guns (1)
Lt. Col. Allen West (2)
Marine Corps (258)
Marines in Bakwa (1)
Marines in Helmand (67)
Marjah (4)
MEDEVAC (2)
Media (42)
Memorial Day (5)
Mexican Cartels (33)
Mexico (46)
Michael Yon (5)
Micromanaging the Military (7)
Middle East (1)
Military Blogging (26)
Military Contractors (4)
Military Equipment (24)
Militia (5)
Mitt Romney (3)
Monetary Policy (1)
Moqtada al Sadr (2)
Mosul (4)
Mountains (25)
MRAPs (1)
Mullah Baradar (1)
Mullah Fazlullah (1)
Mullah Omar (3)
Musa Qala (4)
Music (16)
Muslim Brotherhood (6)
Nation Building (2)
National Internet IDs (1)
National Rifle Association (61)
NATO (15)
Navy (22)
Navy Corpsman (1)
NCOs (3)
News (1)
NGOs (2)
Nicholas Schmidle (2)
Now Zad (19)
NSA (3)
NSA James L. Jones (6)
Nuclear (57)
Nuristan (8)
Obama Administration (218)
Offshore Balancing (1)
Operation Alljah (7)
Operation Khanjar (14)
Ossetia (7)
Pakistan (165)
Paktya Province (1)
Palestine (5)
Patriotism (6)
Patrolling (1)
Pech River Valley (11)
Personal (58)
Petraeus (14)
Pictures (1)
Piracy (13)
Pistol (2)
Pizzagate (21)
Police (410)
Police in COIN (3)
Policy (15)
Politics (448)
Poppy (2)
PPEs (1)
Prisons in Counterinsurgency (12)
Project Gunrunner (20)
PRTs (1)
Qatar (1)
Quadrennial Defense Review (2)
Quds Force (13)
Quetta Shura (1)
RAND (3)
Recommended Reading (14)
Refueling Tanker (1)
Religion (161)
Religion and Insurgency (19)
Reuters (1)
Rick Perry (4)
Rifles (1)
Roads (4)
Rolling Stone (1)
Ron Paul (1)
ROTC (1)
Rules of Engagement (75)
Rumsfeld (1)
Russia (29)
Sabbatical (1)
Sangin (1)
Saqlawiyah (1)
Satellite Patrols (2)
Saudi Arabia (4)
Scenes from Iraq (1)
Second Amendment (260)
Second Amendment Quick Hits (2)
Secretary Gates (9)
Sharia Law (3)
Shura Ittehad-ul-Mujahiden (1)
SIIC (2)
Sirajuddin Haqqani (1)
Small Wars (72)
Snipers (9)
Sniveling Lackeys (2)
Soft Power (4)
Somalia (8)
Sons of Afghanistan (1)
Sons of Iraq (2)
Special Forces (28)
Squad Rushes (1)
State Department (20)
Statistics (1)
Sunni Insurgency (10)
Support to Infantry Ratio (1)
Supreme Court (5)
Survival (26)
SWAT Raids (54)
Syria (38)
Tactical Drills (1)
Tactical Gear (4)
Taliban (167)
Taliban Massing of Forces (4)
Tarmiyah (1)
TBI (1)
Technology (17)
Tehrik-i-Taliban (78)
Terrain in Combat (1)
Terrorism (95)
Thanksgiving (8)
The Anbar Narrative (23)
The Art of War (5)
The Fallen (1)
The Long War (20)
The Surge (3)
The Wounded (13)
Thomas Barnett (1)
Transnational Insurgencies (5)
Tribes (5)
TSA (18)
TSA Ineptitude (11)
TTPs (1)
U.S. Border Patrol (5)
U.S. Border Security (14)
U.S. Sovereignty (17)
UAVs (2)
UBL (4)
Ukraine (3)
Uncategorized (56)
Universal Background Check (3)
Unrestricted Warfare (4)
USS Iwo Jima (2)
USS San Antonio (1)
Uzbekistan (1)
V-22 Osprey (4)
Veterans (2)
Vietnam (1)
War & Warfare (220)
War & Warfare (40)
War Movies (3)
War Reporting (19)
Wardak Province (1)
Warriors (6)
Waziristan (1)
Weapons and Tactics (60)
West Point (1)
Winter Operations (1)
Women in Combat (21)
WTF? (1)
Yemen (1)

September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006

about · archives · contact · register

Copyright © 2006-2019 Captain's Journal. All rights reserved.